First Year Cleveland

First Year Cleveland

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine
Biomedical Research Building
11000 Cedar Avenue - 4th Floor Cleveland, OH 44106

Phone 216-368-4837
Home Solutions Addressing Extreme Prematurity Learning Circle Programs

Learning Circle Programs

To address extreme prematurity in Cuyahoga County, we at First Year Cleveland have launched Learning Circles with birth hospitals and experts.

One of the most effective and collaborative forms of group discussion is the Learning Circle method.

A Learning Circle is a group of individuals with a common interest who meet regularly to talk about a certain topic. Learning Circle discussions are intended to do the following:

  • Provide participants the opportunity to discuss and contribute
  • Inspire participants to take action

At First Year Cleveland (FYC), we have witnessed the impact of group work and discussions through our Action Teams and the CenteringPregnancy model. We know that group discussions can save lives.

For this reason, and in an attempt to collect data, we have launched Learning Circles with local birth hospitals and experts to address extreme prematurity.

At FYC, our Action Teams tackle the challenges that contribute to infant mortality. The focus of FYC Action Team 4, co-led by Rita Horwitz of Better Health Partnership and Dr. Brian Mercer of The MetroHealth System, is to reduce prematurity by coordinating Learning Circle programs comprised of individuals from the following groups: health care practitioners; researchers; birthing experts and other thought leaders who are knowledgeable of preterm birth rates, the correlation of racial disparities and premature birth, extreme prematurity in Cuyahoga County and more.

In the Learning Circle programs, FYC Action Team 4 and participating group members discuss the following topics to address extreme prematurity in Cuyahoga County:

  • Issues contributing to infant deaths
  • Ways to prevent preterm births and help mothers carry their babies to full-term
  • Ways to optimize periviable birth outcomes

Through Learning Circle programs, participants are identifying ways in which extreme prematurity in Cuyahoga County can be reduced — and help more babies see their first birthday. 

In September 2020, FYC Action Team 4 presented an update on their work to date, including three quality improvement interventions. You can read more about their work and findings here


The Learning Circle in Cultural Change: Why Use It?

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